We all have a huge need to be listened to We need to learn HOW TO LISTEN
I need to listen to what is going on in your life
How well do you listen to each other? ? BLAH Fluffy
…well I think that was my name being mentioned! Are you really LISTENING… …or just hearing words?
Since we believe that practice makes perfect, we have some short exercises which illustrate the important aspects of listening
Work with another person, NOT your partner Place your chairs back to back One of you to speak for a minute about … EXERCISE 1 …The ways you like to spend your time….some sport, hobbies, etc. Start now!
What did you notice? How did you feel? It seems to bring out the need to turn our bodies towards the person speaking and to look at them
Turn and face each other. This time the other person will be the speaker EXERCISE 2 Tell the other person about what you did last weekend But the listener must not look at the speaker. Look around, look at your watch, scratch your head etc. You may feel rude, but try it for one minute Start now!
How did you feel talking to someone who was not all interested in what you were saying?
We will now give you an opportunity to practice POSITIVE (ACTIVE) LISTENING This time pair up with your partner and decide who will be the speaker and who will be the listener. EXERCISE 3 Tell your partner about pleasant and unpleasant memories of school days – anything. Memories, teachers, buildings, friends, etc. BUT NOTE…
The listener should say very little. Nod your head. Encourage your partner to say more by your facial expression. Make the odd comment to show you are listening. But don’t tell your own stories. We will give you a signal after two or three minutes then the listener will sum up what they have heard, checking out if they have understood well. Start now!
You CAN say “What you liked about school was…” LISTENER: In your feed back, don’t say: “That reminds me of something that happened when I was at school…” Start now!
How did you feel talking to someone who WAS interested in what you were saying?
* BARRIERS TO LISTENING Fear – of what I am about to be told and the emotional impact it may have on me: “Big boys don’t cry”
Reacting – too often we interpret what we hear as criticism, and we react by trying to justify what we have said, or written; we try to defend ourselves, put ourselves in the right *BARRIERS TO LISTENING
Flight - not wanting to listen because of the demands listening may make on me *BARRIERS TO LISTENING
Listening JUST for INFORMATION and not appreciating the person speaking *BARRIERS TO LISTENING Shut up and give us a kiss!
*BARRIERS TO LISTENING Listening for AFFIRMATION/PRAISE puts the focus on you and not on the speaker…
*Analysing – listening, but looking for ways you think the person needs your help….instead of just listening to the thoughts and feelings. BARRIERS TO LISTENING
Listening is not a PASSIVE exercise – being just a like sponge soaking up what is being said. *Listening is ACTIVE. We need to clarify what we are hearing. Asking questions like: “Am I right in thinking…?” Or “Would you explain that feeling to me a little more…”
Face the speaker, give them your full attention, make eye-contact Make a conscious decision to listen to them in a caring way ACTIVE listening Switch off from your own concerns
*Watch for what the person is communicating non-verbally